Can We Do Better? Replication and Online Appendices in Political Science

Jonathan Grossman, Ami Pedahzur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Replicability in political science is on the rise, as disciplinary journals have been placing a growing emphasis on data access and research transparency (DA-RT) practices and policies. As a result, nearly every article that is published today in leading political science journals offers an online appendix that includes data, code, and methodological explanations necessary for replication. While these developments are laudable, many appendices still do not enable satisfactory replication because they are inaccessible, compartmentalized, and difficult to understand. In this article and in its accompanying online appendix, we demonstrate this problem and make the case for more accessible and comprehensive appendices whose contribution can fulfill and go beyond mere replicability. We propose several ways in which authors and journals can produce better appendices, namely, by making appendices more intuitive, integrated, and standardized, and by choosing an adequate online platform on which to create and host the appendix.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)906-911
Number of pages6
JournalPerspectives on Politics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The research for this paper was supported by the Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Leonard Davis Institute Research Seminar in January 2020. We thank the participants of the seminar for their constructive comments. We are especially indebted to Yoram Haftel and Raelene Camille Wyse for their excellent suggestions.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Cambridge University Press. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations


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